People in Hartlepool will have the chance to learn more next week on plans to create new crossing at the Tees Viaduct used by thousands of town motorists each day.
A public consultation has been launched on proposals for a New Tees Crossing to take pressure off the existing A19 Tees Viaduct.
The Tees Valley Combined Authority has outlined the plans which involve two options, the likely preferred £200million-£250million Tees Viaduct Capacity Enhancement Option and the £300million Tees Viaduct Option.
The first would see a new two-lane bridge built parallel to the existing A19 viaduct to carry traffic travelling northbound and the existing structure widened to allow for an extra lane of southbound traffic. The alternative solution would be to construct a new four-lane bridge parallel to the existing A19 viaduct for north and southbound traffic.
A series of four events will run across the Tees Valley, with the Hartlepool event on Thursday, March 21 from 10am-2pm at Middleton Grange Shopping Centre (at the side of B&M Bargains).
Copies of documents will be available in municipal buildings across the five local authority boroughs, including in Hartlepool, and a virtual consultation will be available online until it closes on May 17.
The preferred route will be announced in autumn and following confirmation of funding from Highways England, construction is set to take place from 2023 to 2027.
Coun Stephen Harker, Tees Valley Combined Authority cabinet member for transport, said: “To achieve our aims of economic growth and job creation, we need a high-quality, quick, affordable, reliable, integrated and safe transport system that works for residents and businesses.
“Transformational improvements to the road network are critical and this consultation outlines proposals for a New Tees Crossing that will alleviate the existing frustrating congestion issues on the Tees Viaduct, which carries the A19 Trunk Road.
“This is a major priority for the Combined Authority, but it’s vitally important that the public has their say in the future of their transport network. I’d urge everyone in the Tees Valley to look at our plans, visit our consultation events and fill in our online questionnaires to make sure their voices are heard.”
The plan is the blueprint for how transport will play a defining role in rebalancing the national economy, improving peoples’ quality of life, and enabling towns and cities across the North to thrive.
Jonathan Spruce, Interim Strategy Director at Transport for the North, said: "Tees Valley has an important role in supporting connectivity across the North. It’s home to world-class industries, a thriving energy sector and major international ports. By connecting these key economic assets and areas of the North, we can transform connectivity and unleash our true potential.
“Our Strategic Transport Plan, including Northern Powerhouse Rail, will give people more choice over where to live and work, more opportunities, and better connections to family and friends.”
For more information and to fill out a consultation questionnaire, visit www.teesvalley-ca.gov.uk/newteescrossing